Category Archives: Seasonal Celebrations

5 Must-See Movies For Valentine’s Day

Filed under: Seasonal Celebrations, Social Life/Relationships - Angelina
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Sylwia BaranBookRenter  Blogger Biography

Love is in the air! And what better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day than by watching movies about love? There are tons of romantic movies out there, which may make it that much harder to decide on the perfect one for you and your valentine to cuddle up to this Valentine’s Day, so I have compiled a movie list of some of my favorites to help you out.

1. The Notebook

This movie is the ultimate romantic movie of our time! You can’t go wrong with the love story of a poor young man and a rich young girl who are forced to separate, but whose love never wavers. Warning: be prepared to shed many tears if you haven’t already seen this movie.

2. Casablanca

If you and your valentine are more into classics, this is the movie for you. This movie is a romantic drama film set during World War II. The story is about the love of the protagonist, Rick, and his lost love, Ilsa, who is in town with her husband. But the story is also of the drama that surrounds their love at this time and place in history as Ilsa must escape the country with her husband.

3. Love Actually

For a more lighthearted and funny romantic film, check out this movie. Although it is based around the holiday season, it’s still absolutely acceptable to watch in February (and all year round)! It follows the love stories of a variety of people of different ages and at different levels of love. Ranging from a young boy in love with his classmate who he has never spoken to, to a newly married couple, to a woman who suspects her husband is cheating on her – this movie has it all.

4. Dirty Dancing

One of my favorites, this movie tells the story of a young girl who is starting to realize the world isn’t as black and white as she had believed it to be. She discovers a different life style when she goes away on vacation with her family and meets Johnny, a “bad boy” dancer played by Patrick Swayze. Not only is the story great, but the soundtrack to this film is also quite amazing.

5. 50 Shades of Grey

For those of you who want to actually go to the movies this Valentine’s Day, this new movie opens on February 14th. Based on the very popular novel by E.L. James, this much-anticipated film has created a lot of buzz.

Any of these five films are a great choice for this Valentine’s Day. If you choose any of the five movies above, it’ll surely make your day more romantic.

What’s your favorite romantic film? Tell us in a comment below!

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3 Ways To Cure Those Winter Blues

Filed under: College Life, Seasonal Celebrations, Tips - Angelina
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Darlene Megino BookRenter Blogger Biography

Do you have a case of the winter blues? The winter season, especially this time of year when spring is right around the corner, can make you feel so drab when you’re indoors so much, the sunlight is minimal, and the weather is so cold! There are many ways to get over the winter blues. Here are three suggestion to help you boost your mood during the rest of this winter season!

1. Exercise

Exercising helps your body release endorphins. Endorphins are the chemicals that help trigger that positive feeling you get after your work out. If the weather isn’t too cold, try going for a jog outside with some friends. The fresh air and company will definitely alleviate the depression from being indoors all day. If the weather is too cold, open up all the curtains, turn on all the lights, and do a video workout from YouTube! My favorite workouts from Youtube are videos from Blogilates.

2. Brighten Your Wardrobe

If you are surrounded by pops of bright color, then you’ll feel that bright energy of spring and summer. You can always add a splash of color to your wardrobe any time of the year! It is crucial to make sure to add some color to your gloomy days. Go all out and pair bright colored pants with a bright top! If that’s a little bit of too much color for you, wear a bright coat, scarf, or purse. Just seeing vibrant colors will make a big difference to brighten your mood!

3. Light Up Your Life 

Sometimes all you need is a bright space to make you feel happy. Get a new lamp or add some decorative lights around your room or bed to do some light therapy. If you want to take it up a notch, light some candles to bring in more light and a relaxing vibe. When selecting candles to light, pick candles that have spring or summer scents.

It may be hard to believe, but spring is coming! Hang in there during these last few weeks of winter, as brutal as they may be. What do you like to do to help cure the winter blues? Leave a comment below!

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Sticking To Your New Year’s Resolutions

Filed under: College Life, Seasonal Celebrations, Tips - Angelina
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Sylwia Baran

The New Year is upon us and everyone is abuzz with their resolutions for 2015. The tricky part every year is actually sticking to the resolutions past the first week of the new year.

Here are a few tips to help you accomplish your New Year’s resolutions:

1. Set Achievable Goals

Most of the time, when we don’t follow through with our New Year’s resolutions, it’s because we set unrealistic goals for ourselves. Challenge yourself with your resolution, but make sure it’s something that you can actually complete. The more likely you can reach your goal, the more likely you will achieve it.

2. Start Slow

Going cold turkey on January 1st is probably not the best way to start off your resolution. Whatever your resolution is, start with small goals and gradually work up from there. Set check points along the way to see yourself making progress. This will also allow you to realistically maintain your goal and allow it to work into your new lifestyle.

3. Reminders

It’s easy to remember your resolutions in the beginning of January when everyone is still talking about them, but as the talk dies down, so does the daily reminders. Thankfully, there are a ton of apps out there that can do just that for you every day. It also doesn’t help to get a friend to help you keep you on track!

4. Don’t Dwell on Slip-Ups

Don’t beat yourself up whenever you don’t accomplish the goals you set for yourself or you’re deterring from the plan you had set. We are bound to slip up in the process from time to time, but don’t let that stop you from working on your resolutions.

5. Reward Yourself

Rewarding yourself for the small accomplishments during the process is just as important as not beating yourself up for the small slip-ups. Each time you’ve made progress toward your goals, or even at the end of each week of working towards your resolution, treat yourself to something special that will encourage you to continue your progress in the upcoming week.

What is your resolution this year? How are you planning on making sure you accomplish it? Tell us in a comment below!

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10 Winter Break Activities That Won’t Break The Bank

Filed under: Fun Ideas, Seasonal Celebrations - Angelina
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Sylwia Baran

Winter break is about half-way through! If you haven’t taken advantage of your time off from school yet, it’s time to start getting serious about having some fun! Here are some suggestions to make sure your winter break is all you could ask for before starting the new semester.

1. Snow Tubing

This doesn’t have to cost a single penny. All you need is snow, a hill, and a garbage lid. Grab some family members and/or some friends and you’ve got a great day ahead of you!

2. Netflix

Winter break is the time to lounge on the couch and binge on your favorite shows and movies. Make some hot chocolate, put on your fuzzy socks, and really get into it – this is the time!

3. Baking

Take this time out of college to try out a few new recipes. The internet is filled with some great ideas, some are even winter festive! If you already know how to bake, try baking something new, if you don’t know how to bake, this is your chance to learn! Once you are done, you will have some delicious snacks to munch on later.

4. Museums

Many museums have “free days” on which you do not have to pay an entrance fee. Take advantage of these! If you go with a couple of friends, it is actually a lot of fun!

5. Re-Organize Your Closet

After four months of piling your laundry all over the place, take a day out of your winter break to clean up a bit. Organize your closet. Go through clothes that no longer fit or you will not longer wear and donate them. Do some laundry and get everything back into place. Doing this always gives me the feeling of a fresh start, which is great for the upcoming Spring semester.

6. Read

Even though you’re probably sick of books by the end of each semester, use your winter break to do something you may not get the chance to do during the semester: read for pleasure.

7. Re-connect With Friends

While classes are in session, it’s hard to keep up with all of our friends in between midterms, finals, and papers. This is the perfect time to re-connect with some of those friends and make some lasting memories.

8. Rent A Cabin

Gather a larger group of your friends and rent a cabin for a couple of days. When you split the cost between all of you, it is not that expensive. If you really want a challenge, do this without the iPads, laptops, and cell phones. Sometimes it is nice to get back in tune with nature.

9. Earn Some Extra Cash

Use the few weeks you have off to earn some extra spending money for the upcoming semester. Find a temporary gig, work in the catering hall, or pick up some extra shifts at your current job while you have the time off.

10. Relax

Whether that means taking a bubble bath or going out dancing, remember to relax this winter break! You deserve to relax before the upcoming semester.

What have you been doing for your winter break? Share with us in the comments!

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Alternative Ways To Celebrate The Holidays

Filed under: Fun Ideas, Seasonal Celebrations, Social Life/Relationships, Volunteering and Giving Back - Angelina
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BookRenter Blogger Biography Cameron Tranchemontagne

The holidays in the fall and winter are my favorite holidays. As I thought about why that is, I realized that gift-giving is low on the list of things I love about the holidays. I think the number one thing that makes Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa so special is the emotion. Maybe it’s the years of Christmas advertisements burned into my mind, but there’s something in the air that just seems to make everything more joyful.

My family celebrates Christmas. We get our Christmas tree a day or two after Thanksgiving, decorate it together as a family, buy gifts for each other, go to my Aunt’s annual Christmas Eve party, and then open presents Christmas morning and eat a hearty breakfast of bacon, sausage, eggs, hash-browns, and toast. This year we decided a change was needed. Instead of our traditional Christmas activities, we decided to scrap the gift-giving, forgo the Christmas tree, and forget the feasts.

These are some unconventional ideas for alternative ways to celebrate the holidays:

1. Family Outing

My family and I went on a vacation. Going on a trip with loved ones is a great way to get closer as you share new and exciting experiences together and create memories to last for years to come. I know I cannot wait to be lounging on the beach in the Virgin Islands with my family, soaking up the sun and fishing by day and having dinner by night.

2. More Than A Gift

My friend’s family has a pretty interesting tradition as well. They also celebrate Christmas, so they buy a tree, invite lots of people over for a pot-luck dinner, and they give each other gifts. However, these gifts are deeply personal and often take more effort than just going to a store and buying something. Some gift examples include a photo album consisting of pictures of the giver and receiver over the years, or a song written and recorded by the giver, or a playlist of songs that the giver knows the receiver loves. All these gifts are different but have one thing in common: they transcend consumerism and touch people on a deeper level.

3. Pay It Forward

Another idea for an alternative holiday is to “pay it forward” by giving the gift of a charitable donation in the name of the person you would normally just go buy the newest gadget for. Think of the good you’ll be doing if, instead of buying your 70 year old grandmother a smartphone that she will never completely understand, donate the money to Alzheimer’s research. Instead of buying dad a new tie, you could buy a months’ worth of dinner for a family less fortunate. If you are having difficulty coming up with a charity, the local food pantries always need help this time of year. I’m sure they would be more than happy to have volunteers.

Whatever holiday you celebrate, remember the true meaning is about celebrating with family, friends, and even the community. It’s about giving back and doing something special. If you could celebrate the holidays differently, what would you do?

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